all within 1 month!

Hello world! 

It’s been a while since I’ve updated, but with good reason, I promise!

So, we know I’ve relocated to Seattle to follow dreams, reach goals, and happiness. But what I didn’t expect was to reach many of those goals within the first month of being here.

Today marks the one month date exactly since I moved. And I wanna share with all of you what I’ve done.

  • snuggled with puppies

    buddy love

    buddy love

  • went to Chucks hop shop – so many beers! and Jess’ first time playingJenga

    don't mess up!

    don’t mess up!

  • went to Salmon La Sac on a short river float (due to weather) & camping with awesome new friends
    salmon la sac

    salmon la sac

    let's go! I'm ready!

    let’s go! I’m ready!

  • realized Seattle has “Little Free Library” which is nothing more than cute bird-house like boxes that you can give and take books from for free

    so cute!

    so cute!

  • Had a girls night at the house & FINALLY played Cards Against Humanity!

    this was for my sister

    this was for my sister

  • Bought a really nice rain coat (it needs to last)
  • Bought hiking boots!

    oh yeah!

    oh yeah!

  • Got my WA driver’s license
  • Went to Mt. Baker and hiked an8mile hike!
    almost there!

    almost there!

    IMG_7288

    so green 

  • Saw my first glacier!
it's so close!

it’s so close!

  • revisited Rock Box (great karaoke place)
  • went roller skating

    old school!

    old school!

  • Volunteered with the Human Rights Campaign & got to go to the Seattle Gala

    so awesome

    so awesome

  • went to many of the great local food places

    ice cream cupcake

    ice cream cupcake

  • Realized grocery shopping is almost an all day affair to buy local and healthy that is!

    so many options!

    so many options!

  • figured out the bus system
  • made espresso from home

    delicious

    delicious

  • found Sebastian (from the Little Mermaid) on the beach (personal fav)
  • Had a great girls night out filled with multiple wine tastings, dancing, a party bus and more dancing!

    flamingo & monkey = bff

    flamingo & monkey = bff

  • visited the Fremont Troll

    it's a big deal out here

    it’s a big deal out here

  • Completed lots of job applications (including one for my dream job)
  • BOUGHT A NEW CAR  (had to wait to pick it up)
    it's a BIG deal

    it’s a BIG deal

    it's blue!

    it’s blue!

  • was given the opportunity to volunteer with GLSEN
  • and today, got to pick up my new car and drive around on my own!

Now, sure, there are lots of things that I completed. But let’s stop and reflect for a moment, shall we?

Part of why I moved out here was to spend less time wasting time and more time volunteering and trying to better the lives of others simply because I can. Within one week I was able to volunteer with two organizations that I feel personally connected to.

The Human Rights campaign was an amazing experience. I got lucky, not having a job allowed me to help often and the entire day of the actually Gala. Tru Blood’s Joe Manganiello was there with his partner Sofia Vergara. So many beautiful people were there, participating as part of the movement to better the world; it was amazing to stand by and watch.

For those of you who don’t know about HRC, their mission statement is the following:

“The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.” ( http://www.hrc.org )

IMG_7524

GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network) is an organization I’ll be able to volunteer at weekly!  Their mission statement is:

“At GLSEN, we want every student, in every school, to be valued and treated with respect, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. We believe that all students deserve a safe and affirming school environment where they can learn and grow. We accomplish our goals by working in hallways across the country — from Congress and the Department of Education to schools and district offices in your community — to improve school climate and champion LGBT issues in K-12 education.” ( http://glsen.org )

How awesome is that? Count me in!

 

Now, on top of the volunteer work, which has been incredible. I’ve realized how far my BA in Psychology can go. I’ve looked more deeply into ways I can further my education, deepen my impact on this world, and challenge myself.

And further, I was able to buy myself a new car (never had one of those before).

she's so pretty!

she’s so pretty!

SUCH AMAZING BLESSINGS! 


The reality of limitations will surface itself I’m sure. But for now, I’m going to take what I have and use it to benefit the lives of others and myself.

I'm so happy!

I’m so happy!

One month in and I’ve already accomplished this much! Just goes to show we are capable human beings. We are able to do ALL things as long as we push ourselves to do so. We have to believe in ourselves and in others if we are going to get the most out of this life!

I thank everyone for being patient with me as I put my life together, for supporting me though all of it, and for believing in me. It means more than you’ll ever know!

 

And remember:

it's true.

it’s true.

Ten Years Ago Today…

Ten years ago today I was sitting on a beach in San Diego, California with my cousin debating my existence. 

Ten years ago, I was struggling with my sexuality.  

I was lost and confused, trying to find some clarity; much of me believing I didn’t belong in this world. At the time, depression had boxed me in. I spent more time trying to navigate between right and wrong and how to exist without upsetting others than I did trying to let myself be me. 

Everyday was a battle against my demons: I had grown to believe that God hated me and therefore religion couldn’t possibly exist in my life. I believed my family was disappointed in me, and therefore I was unworthy of their love. And I felt my friends were unsure of me. All of which lead me to doubt myself and my choices. 

Unfortunately, despite the multitude of people in my life, I believed I was a disgrace to all of them. I knew I wanted to love, and couldn’t understand why that was so hard for people to understand. I spent most of my time apologizing for who I was, beating myself up for desiring someone of the same sex – I spent so much time doing it, I forgot how to live. 

2004, call it my personal blackout. I was so out of my mind depressed that I don’t remember much of that year. It’s painful to think about, to know that I felt that lost. 

Now, back to that sunny beach in San Diego. 

Call it fate, God remaining by my side, or just luck. Unsure of many details, I know that it had been some time since my mom and cousin had spoke, but in 2004 they did. The result of their conversation was me going to San Diego. 

Stereotypical lesbian moment, I listened to Tegan &Sara and T.A.T.U. on my CD player for the entire 6 hour flight. 

Stepping off the plane, I knew nothing of my cousins life for the last few years, and she knew nothing of mine. Two strangers, we greeted one another as if we had seen each other yesterday. (Now let me insert here, that growing up, her and I were inseparable. When I was a baby, she was the only one who could make me truly belly laugh. We had a special bond, and I felt comfort in knowing that). 

Anyway, she was busy with her life and I was confused and disoriented in mine. I spent everyday wondering the streets of San Diego and sitting on the beach. I remember eventually telling her about liking girls, I also remember waiting for her reaction to be judgement, only, it wasn’t. Instead, she looked at me and said “okay.” 

Looking back, I can only laugh at the expression that was probably on my face. I was so used to waiting for people to voice their opinion about how it’s “wrong” that her simple “okay” response and wanting to hear more about my first relationship with a girl, stunned me. Despite whatever may have been running through her mind, she let me speak, and while I spoke, she listened. I think it was then, that I began to come back to life. Began to realize that my life was just that – my life. 

My cousin and I didn’t spend too much time together, again, she had her life to attend to. But for the first time, I felt like I had my freedom back, I could do what I wanted, and didn’t feel like eyes were watching my every move. 

On February 16th, 2004, she took me to a beach. I remember her getting excited over finding a hammock someone had set up between two trees, she sat in it and I snapped a picture. We walked along the beach for a few, until the sun began to set. We sat ourselves in the sand and pulled out our journals. We chatted while we let ourselves express whatever we felt necessary in our journals. I didn’t write that day, instead I sketched a very simple outline of the view before me. 

I’m not sure why it was there or then, but it was there that my hope returned. Hope for life, for myself. Hope for better. 

2.16.04

2.16.04

I returned from my visit to California with a new sense of self. I still had those demons, still felt the judgement from others. But I also felt alive again, I felt strong and able. 

Now, let’s go back for a moment, don’t get me wrong, there were people in my life in 2004 who supported and loved me, people who had my back . But I was so unsure of myself and so depressed that I couldn’t see them. I only saw the hatred and judgement. So to my friends who were around in 2004, you know who you are – Thank You. Thank you with all my heart. To my family, I know we’ve had our moments of uncertainty; we’ve cried, yelled, argued, and debated, but through that, we loved. 

So, if you’re still reading this, thank YOU. As you know, we all face our own demons. And just as we’ve faced them, I’m sure many of us have also overcome them. If you’re facing something right now, know that you’re not alone and know that you have the strength to get through it.

 

It’s through God’s grace that I’m here today. 2004 was a difficult time of growing. A time of change. I can accept who I am now, and that doesn’t mean that times are all butterflies and rainbows, the difficult times are still there, but I’m okay with them. The pain reminds me that I’m alive.

I exist now in 2014 with my head held high. With a belief in God, with hope for this world, for myself, and for everyone else who may be struggling. I believe that every day we can make a difference by existing, by sharing our stories, by loving and supporting one another. 

We are all the same, this is our world, this is our time. Let’s cover it with what matters most: acceptance, kindness, support and love. 

To everyone STILL reading this, everyone who is or has been a part of my life, thank you for your kind heart, it means more than you will ever know.

Hugs & Hope, 

Kylie

 

Colossians 3:12

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”

Building relationships in our past, present & future.

As human beings we function on a strange level, we need to be in contact with others. Sometimes we pick individuals who are “like us,” and other times we pick individuals who are the complete opposite. We develop relationships with those in the same household, neighborhood, work places, schools, through other friends… the list goes on. Then, once we have developed relationships we put them into different categories, different “bubbles.” Time will allow us to keep many relationships, but there’s no denying that life can also separate us from others.

Sometimes, I catch myself wondering why we spend so much time getting to know people and why we use so much time and energy letting them get to know us, when one day they could pack up and leave. it’s a strange concept to me, and maybe it’s because I majored in Psychology, so I read into things.

But I do, I find it strange that we spend so much time trying to build relationships; we strengthen the weak points, reflect on our strengths, talk for hours, spend time showing that we care, we hug and kiss & cuddle, we cry and show real emotion, share monumental moments together, embrace the beauties in life as well as the hardships, we triumph and falter, we sacrifice, spend money, and many other things for friends, family, loved ones, partners, etc. But for what?
Is it not true that at some point we or they will, in some way, leave? We go our separate ways. have an argument that leads to silence. distance ourselves. find things just won’t work out, face the end of our time here on Earth, moving away; the “departing” possibilities are endless. It’s sad.

And it’s hard. Hard to watch those we have built relationships with, walk away. it’s even harder letting them go. Many of us may find ourselves in the position to remain strong and firm in our stance while the other turns to leave, we must find the strength to not lunge after them while screaming, “don’t go!”

We’re then left with memories, right? These fond memories that now cloud our mind…

It’s within these memories, however, that I then come to understand the importance of it all.

I used to sit and wonder, “What’s the point?” How many times have you heard the phrase, “you realize what you had once it’s gone…” THAT’S SO DEPRESSING, so stop thinking that! Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had those moments of “crap! they’re gone… I want them to come back!” but that’s when I have to remind myself that it’s not always about wanting things back, or desiring the things we no longer have. It IS about recognizing how fantastic things were while they were there, and moving on.

If we spend our time thinking about the past, what could have been, etc. We’ll miss out on all of the GREAT things in our present and our future! While thinking about our old friendships we’ll miss out on opportunities to make new ones. So instead of dwelling on the past, learn from it! Change your thinking from “I wonder what could have been,” to “Even though we’ve gone our separate ways, I’m so glad you were part of my life!”

it's okay to move on

The relationships we make are part of life. Part of ourselves, of building our character, personality. A learning experience for next time. It all comes down to learning about our strengths and weaknesses, about others, how we behave in social situations, how we react to conflict, and more. The relationships that are placed into our lives are just as important as the air we breathe! We need them to survive, even if all that’s left of some relationships are memories (good and bad), because they were still a part of our lives!

In my 25 years of life, there have been many people who have come and gone. It’s just something that happens. I find that I’m able to reflect upon my past relationships with great respect, because I have learned a lot about myself, and about who I want to surround myself with. I know that if someone didn’t make it into my future, there’s a reason for it; it was a chance happening that they came into my life, and another chance that they didn’t make it to my future. I know now that no matter what my past may hold, it’s how I move on and into my future that matters.

There will always be “what if” moments. I’m sure I’ll learn a lot more as time continues to press forward. I’ll make new friends, watch others leave, learn more about myself and others… but I’ll do it with a smile.

All this rambling comes with one important message, acknowledge the importance of those in your life now, before life get’s in the way. And if/when you or they leave, and you find that you miss them, that’s okay. Because missing them will remind you that they were real, just remember to think of the good, and not the bad.

So go out and live your life, you never know… the next stranger you run into could be your newest best friend!